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The first years of the yearbooks are shared between the students of Joliet Township High School and Joliet Junior College. Typically, the high school students would occupy the first portion of the book, leaving the latter half for the JJC students. “The J,” as it was known, is still the name of the yearbook for Joliet Central students today. In 1945, the Joliet Junior College students began printing their own yearbook. “The JJC Diary,” was composed in a similar manner to that of “The J,” but included more abstract student writings on the state of life after finishing at Joliet Junior College. This feeling of undefined opportunities that the students held would be a common theme throughout all the yearbooks.
In 1947, “The JJC Diary” changed to “The Shield;” a name which would stay with the JJC yearbook until it ceased publication in 1977. The Shield grew with the population of the school. As more students began to enroll at Joliet Junior College, the bindings became larger. Starting in 1948 with eighty-six pages, The Shield ended in 1977 with over one-hundred and fifty pages – doubled in size with only twenty-nine years between the first and last copy. In those years, we see the College grow from a section within a high school, to its own massive campus. We see changes in the faces – students and faculty, changes in the buildings, and changes in fashion. But from 1923 to 1977, this document shows one constant: Within the temporal environment of education, there will always be dedication to emphasizing the importance of exploration and the pursuit of knowledge.